IMMIGRATION - Lawyer and the Laws of the United States
Immigration law in the US governs the legal right to enter, work, and become a citizen of America. Immigration law is responsible for determining the legal status of foreign nationals in the United States, and taking action to either admit them as citizens, allow them to remain on work visas, or deport them if they are here illegally. For the most part, immigration law is under the jurisdiction of the federal government, however, states have enacted laws that influence immigration, particularly immigration enforcement, as well. Anyone with questions about immigration law or citizenship status should work with and immigration law attorney.
Federal Immigration Laws
The federal government is the primary authority on matters of immigration in the United States. Federal immigration laws have exclusive jurisdiction over the matter of legal entry and citizenship, and states are not permitted to take any action that is in conflict with federal immigration laws. Obtaining a legal visa in the United States - for immigration, work, or school - is governed by federal immigration laws. Immigration visas for people seeking to become permanent citizens are granted upon review of the individual, and have implemented "per-country caps" to restrict the number of immigrants from a particular country. Work or student visas do not have such restrictions, but are typically limited in duration depending on the nature of the work or years of education. Federal immigration laws also determine what an immigrant must do in order to become an official United States citizen, and have sole authority to decree citizenship on those who satisfy the requirements. It is critical for any person entering the US to be familiar with federal immigration laws, and work with an immigration law attorney with any questions.
State Immigration Laws
Although states are not permitted to conflict with the rules of immigration set forth by the federal government, they are permitted to pass laws influencing immigration. State immigration laws can, in some very specific cases, permit differential treatment of immigrants, but cannot restrict an immigrant's access to the rights of the Constitution. Immigration law attorneys are available to any person who feels state immigration laws have exceeded the authority permitted to them. Immigrants can be restricted from holding certain government positions and states may expand authority of the criminal system to crack down on illegal immigration.
Any person with questions regarding citizenship, visas, or punishment for illegal immigration, should contact a properly licensed and professional immigration law attorney for assistance.